Pondicherry is a former french trading post, which joined the Indian Union in 1954.
The population is Tamil, but there are still several thousands of Creoles.
It is both a bustling city with a picturesque market, and one of the few Indian cities where it is pleasant to stroll through the quiet streets lined with flowering trees and beautiful colonial mansions, or mingle with the Indian families who go out for a breath of fresh air in the evenings, on the promenade along the Bay of Bengal.
This is the perfect place to extend your stay and therefore take the opportunity to rest and devote some time to discover more deeply the Indian culture and learn the arts of the country.
For your accommodation
For your accommodation, we suggest a few guest houses and hotels with different prices and luxury levels, in order to match your taste and your pocket.
The guest houses of the Sri Aurobindo ashram (Park guest house with some rooms overlooking the sea or Cottage guest house which is even cheaper) very cheap but with some restrictions. Remember to book well in advance because at certain times of the year these hotels are fully booked .
Small to medium budget
Le Reve Bleu: a guest house with pop colours and a dynamic and friendly manager. You will feel at home, with open spaces to spend time with your friends and comfortable colorful rooms.
Imti-Guest House: located in the Muslim Area, this guest house is managed by a lovely Muslim family,and has a few rooms on the upper level of the house.
Coromandel-Guest House: centrally situated in the city, a pleasant address with a nice little terraceto have coffee and to rest.
The Hibiscus: you will find this pretty guest house with colonial furniture right in front of the Alliance Française in the quiet French Quarter. A little plus: their delicious breakfast is included in the price.
Patricia Guest House: a colonial house full to the brim with antiques, with a small terrace and a welcoming pondicherrian hostess who will be happy to show you around the house.
Hotel de l'Orient: the first address of this type, a charming hotel in Pondicherry with a quiet garden where you can enjoy the restaurant and its Creole specialities, spacious rooms decorated with typical "heritage" furniture
Villa Shanti: a new address. Chic, minimalist, dotted here and there with small Indian nods, seventeen spacious rooms and a large courtyard graced by a beautiful green wall.
What to do?
It is easy to find something to do in Pondicherry and its surroundings according to tastes and budgets. Amongst the most liked activities, visiting the Ganesh temple and get blessed by Lakshmi the elephant is probably first.
For the ones that prefer to walk along the beach, the beach road is a must to do at night time when driving is forbidden and the street is fully used by pedestrians.
Visiting the Matrimandir in Auroville will allow you to understand a bit the community there and their meditation principles.
You prefer tour guide?
The Pondy Cycle Tour will make you visit Pondicherry cycling in the fresh air of the morning. And for a new view of the city, Pondy Nautic will make you discover it from the sea for a completely new experience.
Want to move?
If you prefer more physical activities during your stay, you can check swimming pools in Pondicherry and around like Atithi or Mango Hill.
You can also find places to practice yoga, dance ... that we offer at SITA amongst lots of others !
Where to eat?
Just 2 words: street food! It is really easy to find street food stalls like for example at the cross between Bussy Street and the Canal where they are numerous. They are lots of kinds of food, from samousas to biryani and the price is more than attractive! Moreover, it is a typically Indian experience to wait for your food on the side of a busy street. It is the opportunity to discover new flavours as well.
Lots of small restaurants offer Indian or Western food for a reasonable price. For Indian dishes but not too spicy, Tasty restaurant is perfect and if you are missing Western food, “Chez Nous” offer affordable Italian recipes.
Like for accommodation, the Villa Shanti is an address to remember. It offers Indian and Western cuisines. With a very similar name and excellent quality as well, the Villa restaurant has a menu mixing the cultures. Ideal to appeal to everyone!
Where to dress?
You would like to try Indian fashion? Interested in sarees, longhis and other colourful kurtas? Here are a few tips.
Firstly, there are a few stalls in the street and little shops that are selling more traditional Indian clothes. You will probably have to bargain but it’s an excellent way to get dress for a minimal price!
The very big shop Pothy’s. It’s the place to go to be sure to find what you are looking for. There is everything for every taste and every budget. If you want to by an already-made top or just the textile to take it to the tailor, synthetic or cotton, everyday clothes or special occasion ones, everything is easily available.
For more activitis you can also check this page!